2023 National Volunteering Conference
Volunteering Australia is delighted to present the 2023 National Volunteering Conference Program.
The conference theme, The Future is Now, will challenge delegates to explore how our decisions and actions today will build a better future for volunteering. Each in-person conference ticket includes access to the full program consisting of two full days of interactive workshops, plenary sessions and opportunities to network.
The program has been designed to include practical, strategic and research-focused sessions with multiple streams of breakout sessions to choose from. This premier event will showcase innovative approaches to volunteer engagement and we will hear from speakers with deep and diverse expertise from across the volunteering ecosystem.
Further information about speakers and how to select your preferred breakout sessions will be announced shortly.
Monday, 13 February 2023
- Registrations from 7.30am
- Day One of the conference will kick off at 9.00am with a series of concurrent sessions
- A Welcome Lunch will be held at 12.00pm with the conference opening at 1.00pm with a Welcome to Country
- In the afternoon, the National Strategy for Volunteering will be launched followed by plenary and concurrent sessions
- A conference drinks reception will be held in the evening
Tuesday, 14 February 2023
- Day Two of the conference will involve a mix of plenary and concurrent sessions
- The conference will wrap up at 5.00pm on Tuesday
Plenary 1: Launch of the new National Strategy for Volunteering
Plenary session 1 will give an overview of the new National Strategy for Volunteering presented by the National Strategy Director. A panel made up of the Chair of the National Strategy for Volunteering Council and the Chairs of the Research, Volunteer Management, and Corporate Volunteering Working Groups will discuss the ambition of the National Strategy, the journey so far, and what happens next. The conversation will consider where we are now and how we get to where we want to be in 10 years’ time. Throughout the conference, there will be opportunities to dig deeper into the themes and ideas in the National Strategy.
Plenary 2: Changing landscape, changing climate, changing attitudes: the evolution of emergency volunteering
Plenary session 2 will address how volunteering needs to respond to climate change and the increasing frequency and severity of emergencies. It will span preparation, response and recovery and will examine areas including the importance of diverse voice, First Nations perspectives, health and wellbeing including the mental health of volunteers, coordination across organisations, targeted action plans, and the future of volunteering.
Plenary 3: Reimagining volunteering across the ecosystem: learning from, and collaborating with, each other
Plenary session 3 will explore the breadth and diversity of volunteering and hear from different elements of the volunteering ecosystem. The discussion will focus on opportunities for, and examples of, cross-sector learning and collaboration. It will include a panel discussion with representatives from sport, care and support, emergency relief and informal volunteering. The conversation will build on the launch of the new National Strategy for Volunteering with panelists considering how their organisations and sectors can align with and support the implementation of the National Strategy.
Plenary 4: The International Context
Plenary session 4 will offer a ‘big picture’ framing for Day two of the conference. We will hear from two leading international volunteer experts who will provide the global context. This will include highlighting how the future of volunteering is being discussed on the global stage, what are the big debates and trends, and how the new generation of young people are bringing fresh insights and perspectives on the future of volunteering.
Plenary 5: Volunteering for the common good: the future of charities and the not-for-profit sector
Plenary session 5 will explore the future of volunteering in the wider context of reform in the charities and not-for-profit sector. We will hear from leaders from across the charities and not-for-profit sector, who will discuss the hard questions about what needs to happen for charities and their volunteer workforces to thrive.
Plenary 6: The Future is Now, so what next?
Plenary session 6 will be run by the next generation of young volunteer researchers, managers, policymakers, and others. The panel will reflect on their insights from the conference and a facilitated discussion will cover some key questions that are vital to the future of volunteering.
Concurrent Sessions Streams
The themes for the concurrent sessions that will run throughout the conference will enable participants to engage in both strategic conversations about the future of volunteering and practical workshops where experts showcase innovations, research, and insights. The concurrent sessions are a mixture of three formats:
- Panel discussions
- Presentations and Q&A
- Interactive workshops
A. EVIDENCE & PRACTICE
The evidence & practice stream will bring together research and practice insights on cutting-edge volunteering topics.
A1 & A2: Informal Volunteering Symposium
A3: The Volunteering in Australia research – what’s next?
A4: The evolution of sport volunteering – learning from evidence and practice
A5: International volunteering lessons
B. INCLUSION, DIVERSITY & INTERSECTIONALITY
The inclusion, diversity & intersectionality stream will focus on a range of perspectives relating to inclusion, diversity and intersectionality and their implications for volunteering policy and practice in the future.
B1: Harnessing the power of lived experience
B2: Focus on LGBTQI+
B3: Focus on First Nations
B4: Focus on multicultural perspectives
B5: Focus on settlement experiences
C. LEADERSHIP & INNOVATION
The leadership & innovation stream will highlight innovation across various dimensions and provide insights into how different elements of the volunteering ecosystem are doing things differently and achieving impact.
C1: Innovations in volunteer engagement
C2: Innovations in corporate volunteering
C3: Innovating with technology
C4: Innovations in governance & strategy
C5: Innovating for Impact
D. VOLUNTEERING ACROSS THE LIFECYCLE
The volunteering across the lifecycle stream will explore the role of volunteering at different stages of the lifecycle and how volunteers support and engage with different age groups.
D1: Child safe volunteering
D2: Youth volunteering
D3: Student volunteering
D4: Volunteering in health settings
D5: Volunteering in aged care settings
E. VOLUNTEERING ACROSS THE NATION
The volunteering across the nation stream will look at the breadth and diversity of volunteering across the Australian landscape.
E1: Innovations across the nation
E2: Focus on environmental volunteering
E3: Focus on emergency volunteering
E4: Regional & rural perspectives
Please note: The conference program and sessions are subject to change.